Author Archives: Brian Lawler

About Brian Lawler

Brian Lawler is a Professor of Graphic Communication at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. He writes about graphic arts processes and technologies for various industry publications, and on his blog, The Blognosticator.

From variable-frequency drives
to hand-bound books

It’s been about a month since I wrote my last blog. It was about variable-frequency-drive high voltage motor controllers and a 1935 book sewing machine. The relevance of that is cloudy, but suffice it to say that I have been … Continue reading

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Electronic motor control
and my obsession with a 1935 bookbinding machine

This is the second part of my obsession story. To read the first part, please click here. And that’s where my odyssey began. Alternating current induction motors use the frequency of the line power (60 Hz in our case) to … Continue reading

Posted in Bookbinding, Education, Imposition and Pagination, New technology, Printing and Printing Processes, Technology | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Obsessing on a 1935 bookbinding machine

I get obsessed about my projects. My current obsession is the restoration of a 1935 Smyth book sewing machine in the Shakespeare Press Museum at Cal Poly (I am the faculty advisor). That machine sews the spines of hard-cover books. … Continue reading

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Running the five-color
Pearl press postcard

Last year I began the restoration of an 1895 Pearl press, a treadle-powered letterpress that was donated to the Cal Poly Shakespeare Press Museum. That press was a rusty machine when we took delivery of it. I took it to … Continue reading

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Reminiscences of a prepress guy

I am an old prepress guy. I owned one of the first PostScript service bureaus in the U.S. I was there at the beginning. It was painful, but overall it was a great business. We had been traditional typographers, and … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Color Management, History, Photoshop techniques, Printing and Printing Processes, Software | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

A tale of Burning Man dust and light

I pulled my bike up to the rack at Center Camp, poking its front wheel into the wooden slats that would hold it there. On the other side of the rack was a man taking his bike out of the … Continue reading

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An EOS R follow-up:
two months later

I bought the Canon EOS R camera in May after considerable research and a one-week rental test of the device. I am the photographer of the Festival Mozaic, a classical music festival in San Luis Obispo. Each year I shoot … Continue reading

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The Laowa Probe macro lens – after a week

I have been shooting with the Laowa lens now for a week. Of course it rained for three days, so I didn’t get out as much as I had hoped. My overall impression of the lens: it’s well-built. It’s beautifully … Continue reading

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More on the Laowa wide angle macro probe lens

In my blog last week I described how the Laowa lens had arrived, and how I illustrated it so that the world would have access to its dimensions. I have been using it for several days now (though we were … Continue reading

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